Costs of competing and related issues


That web-site is probably out dated. Here’s a photo of a $10,000 donation that they gave in July 2018.


990s are public too. It’s hard to believe, but 99.99% of his cash outflows are to the SA. The rest is maintaining games.


Interesting. I don’t recall which article he expressed dissatisfaction with SA.
“It will also mean that we will stop almost all our charitable giving for the near future.”


As I said above, players who can’t afford to travel. Look at the top 100 ranked players and see how many have traveled to get their high ranking.

Many other sports are also this way, although some other sports offer prize pools large enough to pay for travel and expenses. Not pinball. If you are a excellent player but can’t afford to travel, you’ll never be highly ranked. Other than increasing prize pools, I don’t see any other way to fix this.

I’m not complaining, just pointing out the obvious. Hard to imagine some folks can’t see this. There are plenty of under ranked players out there who would be ranked higher if they could afford to travel. That’s a fact.


Isn’t that sort of what the state ranked system is supposed to solve? So you can be the big fish in your state and wasn’t 75% of the fee supposed to go back to the state champ to cover their travel expenses?


There are plenty of people all over the world who would be better at [hobby] if they just had more money to [hobby-enhancing activities]

If folks really want higher IFPA rankings - if it’s that important to them - they’ll find a way to get to tournaments.


Sure. If I stopped paying my mortgage and became homeless, I could afford to travel to more events. I like having a roof over my head. I guess pinball isn’t as important as shelter to me.


If you have $0 remaining after paying your mortgage, you are not in the scope of this discussion. Folks who go to tournaments have disposable income. If you really like tournaments, you’ll find a way to devote as much as your disposable income to that as you can.

If you don’t have enough disposable income to go to all the tournaments you’d like, welcome to life! Time to either make more income or be choosier about where you want to dispose of it, just like everyone else!


So just increase your income so that you can compete at a high level. Thanks for proving my point.

Income shouldn’t be a factor when you’re trying to determine who are the best players.


The only point you’re making is that you dislike income inequality. Nothing you’re saying has anything to do with pinball in particular.


Is this seriously what is being discussed? Can someone please refer me to the initial thread? I don’t want to respond here unless I understand the context.


See post 1. It links to the original thread that was forked into 3 or so new threads.


To rank players relative to each other, those players need to actually play against each other. For pinball that means they have to be in the same physical location at some point. Which requires travel. Which requires money. You can’t get around that.


Thank you. I saw that thing underneath - didn’t realize it was a link :smiley:

Ok. So I see what’s being discussed and I like the idea of lower entry fees for lower rankings. In fact - we’ve done it here in Pittsburgh during a season of Fight Club. Anyone ranked over a certain threshold got in the tourney for free, while anyone over that threshold had to pay. I want to say the magic number was 1000. If you were IFPA 1500 you got in for free. If you were IFPA 500 you paid. Once in the tourney - everyone was competing for the same thing (everyone could win prize money). It’s a good thing to bring people into the sport.

Do you know why you can’t travel for a tournament if you can’t afford it? Because there’s nobody sponsoring you. Even if you were a local hero, nobody is going to foot your bill to travel and put you in the tourney. Let’s go one further. Do you know why there’s nobody willing to sponsor you? Because there’s no money in pinball anyhow. Outside a couple extremely large events every year, even perennial circuit events don’t have much money up top.

I write a pinball blog and follow it up by sharing it with people outside this community (it’s a steemit thing, don’t ask :smiley:). Competitive pinball isn’t even on their radar. I do get a handful of people that respond - oh I used to love pinball. But competitive pinball is completely foreign to them. You want to make it so that income doesn’t factor in? Make it so that the people I speak with have some idea that competitive pinball exists. I have spoken with hundreds of people. Not one ever said they’d heard of competitive pinball.

Bring in more people. Bring in more money (from the outside). Bring in an audience. And let the best in the world compete without having to worry about entry fees. Outside of all of that - you can’t really do much to account for people that can’t travel. Unless you want to cover their expenses. Just so it’s clear - I don’t travel. And I’ve never owned a pin.


I agree 100%. That doesn’t change the fact that those who can afford to travel have an avantage over those who can’t afford to travel. Maybe some day pinball will become an Olympic sport and players will have their travel and expenses paid for, but we certainly aren’t there now.

If anybody thinks this is about me, it’s not. I’m 59 years old. My eyes and reflexes have declined to a point where I will never be able to crack the top 10. Just pointing out the obvious. There are excellent players out there who would be higher ranked if they could afford to travel. I’d give examples, but I don’t want to embarrass anyone.


Most Olympic athletes are paying way more out of pocket for their sport than anyone in pinball.

There is also the argument, if you don’t want to travel to compete, get an event started near you.


Do you think the sport of pinball is completely inclusive? That any player, no matter where they live or what their income level is, can reach the top 10 in rankings based solely on their ability?


Of course not. Not every person has the innate skills to become top 10, regardless of anything else. The next most important ingredient is desire. I can afford to travel to tournaments, and doing so would definitely improve my ranking, but I don’t have the TIME to do so because I don’t have enough DESIRE to improve my ranking. How do those people fit into your theory - those who can afford the cost but not the time?


No, and I’d say the same for 99.9% all sports and games contested in the United States. So pinball isn’t remotely interesting or unique in that aspect.


Just as an aside, I’m really interested in this topic but some of the discussion here has been very aggressive and not pleasant to read. I get that people have strong opinions about this stuff but that doesn’t mean it can’t be civil.